Metabolic syndrome refers to a condition when an individual has 3 or more risk factors (high cholesterol, high fasting glucose, high blood pressure, high triglyceride levels, and abdominal obesity) present. According to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, people with metabolic syndrome are twice as likely to develop heart disease and five times as likely to develop diabetes as those without metabolic syndrome.
While it appears rates of metabolic syndrome may have leveled off over recent years, one alarming statistic according to data collected by the NHANES study is that the prevalence of metabolic syndrome increases with age. While 18.3% of 20-39 year olds were affected by metabolic syndrome between the study years of 2003-2004 and 2011-2012, it was found to affect 46.7% of people aged 60 and over. Of those 60 and older, over half of women and half of Hispanics had metabolic syndrome.
While this statistic is alarming, the American Heart Association says Americans can reduce their risk of metabolic syndrome. They recommend increasing your amount of physical activity, reducing your weight, and consuming a diet rich in fruit, vegetables, whole grains, and fish to reduce your risk of metabolic syndrome. The American Heart Association also recommends regular visits with a healthcare provider to monitor your blood pressure, blood sugar, weight, and cholesterol levels.
For those who are unable to reduce their risk of metabolic syndrome by diet and exercise alone, bariatric weight loss surgery may be an option. People with a BMI over 35 may be eligible for gastric bypass, gastric sleeve, or adjustable gastric band surgery. With weight loss surgery, it can be possible for patients to reduce their weight and thus abdominal obesity, as well as reduce their glucose levels, blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and triglyceride levels. The key is to improve these conditions before they progress into heart disease or diabetes.
If you have one or more risk factors for metabolic syndrome, please follow your doctor’s advice on how to improve your health. If you are considering surgical weight loss in order to prevent or treat these conditions, call Dr. Shillingford, M.D., P.A. at (561) 483-8840 to schedule a free consultation at his Boca Raton office to discuss your surgical options. Dr. Shillingford is a board certified general surgeon specializing in gastric sleeve, gastric bypass, and adjustable lap band surgeries. His patients come from all over South Florida, including Palm Beach, Delray Beach, Wellington, Fort Lauderdale, Miami, and Miami Beach and as far north as Orlando and Jacksonville.